Tuesday, February 22, 2011
I didn't think so.
Lately, I've had my fair share of needle experience. January and February have been full of needles. Nope, I haven't taken up cross-stiching or needlepoint. I've been in treatment for my neck and shoulder issues. My doc referred me to physical therapy--to a specific therapist who does a specific treatment called dry-needling. So, twice a week I drive a half-hour to have myself stuck with needles. I know you wish you were me.
Apparently, my neck and shoulder issues are due to misuse and abuse for many years, and ignoring the chronic tension there for too long. Dry-needling is a way to get very tight muscles to release over time. Kelly, my PT (who I really like in spite of what she does to me) takes acupuncture needles and sticks them into various spots on my neck and head and shoulders. It does not hurt when they go in--the needles are so thin you don't feel a puncture at all. However, then she either leaves them there or wiggles them around until the muscle twitches and releases. It is not particularly pleasant to have them wiggled. Kelly says I "secretly like it", cause it's helping me. If she leaves the needles in to "cook", she comes back after five minutes and "spins" them, and then removes them after an additional 5 minutes. It's not as bad as the wiggling part, but it's achy and weird. Then I get a ten minute heat application (also known as a nap). That part is nice. Kelly says, "come for the needles, stay for the heat".
She also has me making ergonomic changes to my workstation at work, and to my laptop habits at home (read here: no more blogging from my couch or bed--boo.), and doing some stretches for my posture, etc. On top of that, every two weeks I head back to my doc and he gives me "trigger point injections" into my overtight muscles. The injections contain some meds that help my uptight muscles to chill a bit. Each time, I drive right from the doc's to PT for Kelly to "dig the snot out of" my muscles. On those days--no needles from Kelly--just massage and ultrasound. And then heat if I want. It's a regular spa-day!
It's been almost two months and I am just starting to notice the treatments paying off. I think I am beginning to turn a corner. So, bloggies, perhaps you have been wondering where I was if I wasn't blogging? Perhaps you imagined me shopping, relaxing, or enjoying the beautiful Colorado mountains. NOPE. Much of my normal writing time I am laying face down with all sorts of needles sticking out of me.
Like a porcupine.
A porcupine with bad posture and incorrect laptop technique--that's me. :0)